PenPal is 2!

If somebody had told me two years ago that I’d still be posting random, meaningless spiel on this site, I certainly would not have believed them. But the time seems to have flown by and today marks my blog’s second anniversary.

To be honest I thought this site would be a fling, a mere phase to be looked back on with embarrassment but it has turned into a prominent part of my life. I believe having kept a blog has been a great experience, I can look back and see what I used to get up to and how my writing style has changed (oh my word, it used to be awful)! I would definitely recommend keeping yourself a blog, it really is a great way to look back and reflect.

Here’s to another 2+ more years of PenPal!

My first post:

The Animals of Farthing Wood

I don’t know what it is about children’s television these days, it’s just so different. Gone are the hand drawn cartoons and grainy animations I used to watch, replaced with cutting-edge, technology enriched spectacles with much higher budget then anything I saw.

Perhaps it is because I’m older now that I don’t warm to these new programs, or perhaps they are just so different from the programs I used to watch that I can’t help but reject them.

the_animals_of_farthing_wood_by_linuswesley-d3kkngcThe Animals of Farthing Wood is a perfect example of the TV of my childhood. Not only is it about friendly, cartoon animals (and let’s face it, can you ever beat that) but it has strong moral messages of friendship, courage and unity. It’s about these animals who all join together when their forest comes under danger from deforestation. They go on a great long journey to ‘White Deer Park’, a nature reserve. On the way many of them are shot or run over or killed in fires, but eventually they all get to the reserve. In the second series the animals fight against a rival fox gang and in the third series they stop rats invading the park.

Picture1What amazes me about TAOFW is the sheer amount of adult themes it deals with. It’s surprising to see a children’s program filled with violence and casual sexual undertones, not to mention the sibling rivalry, anarchy, senility, treachery, assassination attempts, betrayal, torture, bullying, racial segregation, warfare, abusive relationships, affairs and the reality that, with an animal’s short life-span, they can die when they still have the voice of a child.
You’d never find these themes nowadays and, thinking about it, you wouldn’t find them in any other children’s show. Maybe that’s what makes the Animals of Farthing Wood special or Picture2maybe it’s just the cute, cartoon animals!

I recently rewatched the whole three series of TAOFW and it just struck me how much of moral, emotional tale it is, so much so that adults can watch it as well as children. I recommend you watch it now! Unless you have GCSEs coming up that is.


The Horne Section Recording – Series 3 Episode 5&6

So on Friday night I went to another Radio Recording, this time for ‘The Horne Section’. ‘The Horne Section’ are a comedy jazz club who tour the UK doing shows and stuff. Anyways, back in 2012 they were given their own radio show for BBC Radio 4 which is just about to broadcast its 3rd series.

???????????????????????????????The episodes are each supposed to have their own topic however almost always go bizarrely off-key. For instance episode 6 (the second episode I was at) was based around shopping and consumerism however split into many tangents including music festivals, twerking and a jingle for a milk advert. The episodes also have (not)famous comedians on them, ranting and singing off-tune about whatever they think is funny.

???????????????????????????????The first episode I saw contained Marcus Brigstocke (that annoying man whom I hate) talking about France or something. The second show saw Adam Buxton come to the stage. He was actually quite funny, performing some nice banter with the group’s leader Alex Horne before going on to sing some songs he’d written about… actually I’ve forgotten.

Picture1After the show I met the entire band (and got them all to sign a great picture of them)! I also met guest star Adam Buxton and Pedro; a guest saxophonist who has the most amaaaazing voice ever! Anyway, it was a great evening and the show will be broadcast later this year.

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